IRON – PART 1.
❓Why are so many women that I see in clinic IRON deficient❓
Symptoms of low iron include:
✳️ Increased infections
✳️ Pale skin and gums
✳️ Poor concentration
✳️ Hair loss
✳️ Irregular heartbeat
Iron deficiency anaemia is more common than we think.
One of the biggest problems is that while our Haemoglobin on our blood test often looks in range, when we look deeper at iron saturation and ferritin (iron stores) we may see a very different picture.
- For example for your ferritin to be in range, your doctor will be looking at a ‘normal’ range being from around 19-350. This means that the vast majority of people walking around the UK will have levels within this range.
- While this is NORMAL it may not be optimal. Optimal iron levels are around 70-100 which means that while your ferritin level at 21 might be in range, you may be far from optimal. You need to look at your own blood tests to see where you are!
- In clinic we measure haemoglobin, transferrin saturation as well as ferritin to give us a better picture of what is happening beneath the surface.
- This gives us the best view as to who might need iron supplementation and how much someone might need.
- Iron levels change slowly and can take a whole to get back I to normal range. Many iron supplements are difficult to digest and can lead to nausea and constipation.
✅ Some iron supplements are hard to absorb, so it is important to take your iron in a more natural form, such as iron bisglycinate, or iron glycinate.
❌ Iron sulphate is not a good form of iron to take.
✅ I like to supplement iron in a form that also contains vitamin C, vitamin B12 (methylcobalamin), Vitamin B6 (in P-5-P Form) and folate (as methyltetrafolate).
✅ I also sometimes use an oral spray that is absorbed through the gums.
It is best to take iron before bed. Why?
- Because you will absorb more iron on an empty stomach and if you have not eaten for 2 hours.
- Iron capsules can make some people feel nauseous, so night time might be better.
You may need to supplement for 90 days before for you see the full results in your blood values.